The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to consider training all of its roughly 100,000 employees about how to intervene when they see a hate crime taking place.
Supervisors Hilda Solis and Kathryn Barger proposed the change and asked their colleagues to declare May Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month.
“During the COVID-19 pandemic, fear-mongering, discrimination and hate incidents and crimes against AAPIs have once again resurfaced,” the motion reads in part. “This scapegoating will have lasting repercussions.”
A common thread in many of the recent unprovoked assaults is that bystanders failed to step in and help. Solis and Barger acknowledged that people may need special training to do so.
They pointed to studies showing the effectiveness of intervention in cases of sexual assault and harassment.
The board directed the human resources department to work with unions to see whether it is feasible to roll out training, possibly online, to all employees, and at what cost. The department will also consult with unions to determine whether the training should be mandatory.